With increasing end-user and OEM awareness about energy efficiency and its potential cost savings, the market for efficient fractional horsepower (FHP) motors is taking off, according to a new report from Frost & Sullivan (www.motors.frost.com). "Strategic Analysis of the European AC Fractional Horsepower (FHP) Motors Market," focused on single-phase and poly-phase technologies, predicts that market revenues will grow from nearly $1.5 billion in 2009 to an estimated $1.8 billion by 2016.
Although the economic downturn had a negative impact on the price-sensitive ac FHP motors, demand is set to rise, due in large part to recovering European economies and increased investments in Central and Eastern Europe. Also, FHP motor manufacturers are trying to differentiate themselves by offering integrated solutions and value-added services, according to the report. Customer focus is shifting to products that offer better energy savings, including poly-phase ac FHP motors with inverters.
"OEMs and end users are replacing standard, low-efficient shaded pole and permanent split capacitor (PSC) motors with poly-phase ac FHP motors," says Sahitya Yerramreddy, a research analyst at Frost & Sullivan. "Further, declining inverter prices along with advancements in power electronics are spurring the adoption rate of poly-phase ac FHP motors."
Yerramreddy also notes that many ac FHP motor manufacturers are shifting their manufacturing bases from Western Europe to Central and Eastern Europe to take advantage of lower labor costs, and to cater to the increased automation needs in the area.